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Material is the first and most important element of cost.
Material simply means any commodity or substance which
is processed in a factory in order to be converted into
finished product. Materials may b raw
material, components, tools, spare parts, consumable stores
Materials include both DIRECT AND INDIRECT materials.
Direct and indirect materials purchased for stock purposes
to be issued to different jobs, work orders or departments
as and when required are known as stores.
DIRECT MATERIALS : Materials which form
a part of a finished product are known as direct
materials. For ex- leather used making pair of shoes or
yarn required for cloth are direct materials.
INDIRECT MATERIALS : They cannot be
treated as a part of finished product because it cannot
be conveniently and accurately allocated to a
particular unit of a product. For ex- nails used in
making of shoes, or button or threads used in stores
It can be defined as a comprehensive framework for the
accounting and control of material cost designed with the
object of maintaining material supplies at a level so as to
ensure uninterrupted production but at the same time
minimising investment of funds.
It is the systematic control over the
purchasing, storing, and using of material so as to have
the minimum possible cost of material. In simple
words, it is a system which ensures that right quality of
material is available in the right quantity at the right time
and right place with the right amount of investment.
Material control has two dimensions :
Quantity or unit control : production executive or
storekeeper is interested in quantity control because their
interest is to see that there should not be any stock out
Rupee or financial control : Financial executives are
interested that too much money should not be invested in
materials and every rupee spent in material should be
efficiently and effectively utilised.
There are two aspects of material control as given :
ACCOUNTING ASPECT : This aspect is concerned
with maintaining documentary evidence of
movement of materials at every stage right from the
time sales and production budgets are approved to the
point when materials are purchased and actually used
in production operations.
OPERATIONAL ASPECT : This aspect of material
control is concerned with the maintenance with the
maintenance of material supplies at a level so as to
ensure that material is available for use in production
and production services as and when required by
minimising investments in material.
AVAILABILITY OF MATERIALS : There should be
availability of all types of materials in the factory so that the
production may not held up for the want of materials.
NO EXCESSIVE INVESTMENT IN MATERIALS : There
should not be excessive investment in materials.
Overstocking must be avoided. Investment must not tied up
funds that could be better used in other activities.
REASONABLE PRICE : while purchasing it is seen
that it is purchased at low prices. But quality should not
be sacrificed at the cost of lower price.
MINIMUM WASTAGE : There should be minimum
possible wastage of materials while these are being
stored in godowns or used in factory. It should be
allowed upto certain level known as normal wastage.
NO RISK OF SPOILAGE OR OBSOLESCENCE : In
order to avoid spoilage or obsolescence , maximum
quantity of each material is determine d and proper
method of issue of materials is followed.
READY INFORMATION ABOUT AVAILABILITY OF
MATERIAL : The shopkeeper can supply the information
because he keeps an up to date record of every item of
stocks under a proper system of material control.
MISAPPROPRIATION OF MATERIAL : Material can
easily be misappropriated by employees. Therefore, this
requires an internal check on materials which is a part of
RIGHT AMOUNT OF PAYMENT TO SUPPLIERS :
Invoices received from supplies should be approved for
payment only if items of materials ordered have been
received and properly checked to avoid excess payment to
There should be proper coordination and cooperation
among departments involved in purchasing, receiving
and inspection, storage and sales, production and
Purchases of materials should be centralised.
There should be proper scheduling of materials.
A good method of classification of materials should
there should be proper inspection of materials when
they are received by the receiving department.
Purchase are made by purchase department.
PURCHASE DEPARTMENT procures
material, supplies, services, machines at most
favourable terms consistent with maintaining the
desired standard of quality. Thus, if size of business
concern permits, it should have separate purchase
department and responsibility of purchasing of all
types of materials should be entrusted to this
It means that all purchases should be made through
one route through one department.
When materials are purchased , more discounts can
be get because quantity purchased will be more.
Specialised skills and knowledge can be utilised.
Better control on purchasing is possible.
It helps in following uniform purchasing
policies, practices and purchases.
It avoids duplication of efforts and helps in achieving
it causes delay.
In centralised purchasing, branches at different places
cannot take advantage of localised purchasing.
There can be chances of misunderstanding between the
branch which requires the material and the purchasing
department with the result that wrong purchases of
material can be made.
It will lead to high initial cost because a separate
purchasing department with the result that wrong
purchases of material is to set up.
What to purchase ?
When to purchase ?
Where to purchase ?
How much to purchase ?
At what price to purchase ?
The purchase officer does not initiate any action for
the purchase of materials on his own accord. With the
help of purchase requisition, purchase officer comes
to know the types of material needed in the
organisation. This is a form used as a request to the
purchasing department to purchase material. This
form is prepared by the storekeeper and is generally
prepared in triplicate the original copy is sent to the
purchasing department, the duplicate is kept by
storekeeper or the department which initiates the
requisition and triplicate is sent to authorising
To strengthen material control, purchase control must
be matched by equally effective stores control to avoid
losses from misappropriation, damage, evaporation or
STANDARISATION AND SIMPLIFICATION
they are the most important methods of controlling
the size of materials which help in reducing the no. Of
varieties stocked in the store. Efforts should be made
to allot specifications to each item stored in the store.
The specification must be clear so that the buyer and
seller must be certain that they are considering the
Simplification is a corollary of standardisation and
aims at reducing the number of items carried in the
store so that the carrying cost of materials and
investments in materials may be reduced.
TYPES OF STORES
a) Centralised stores
b) Decentralised stores
c) Central stores with sub stores
There are two important stores records known as BIN
CARDS AND STORES LEDGER.
BIN CARDS :
A bin card makes a record of the receipt and issue of
material and is kept for each item of stores carried. These
cards are maintained by storekeeper and the storekeeper is
answerable for any difference between the physical stock and
balance shown in the bin card. These cards are not only used
for recording receipt and issue of stores but also to assist the
shopkeeper to control the stock. A bin card is also known as
BIN TAG OR STOCK CARD.
This ledger is kept in the costing department and is
identical with the bin card except that receipts, issues
and balances are shown along with their money values.
This contains an account for every item of stores and
makes a record of receipts, issues and balances both in
quantity and value. Thus, this ledger provides the
information for the pricing of materials issued and the
money value at any time of each item of stores.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BIN
CARD ANDSTORE LEDGER
A record of quantities only.
A record of both quantities
Maintained by storekeeper.
Normally posted just before
the transaction take place.
Each transaction is
Usually kept inside the stores.
maintained by the costing
Always posted after the
transaction take place.
Transactions may be
summarised and posted
Kept outside the stores.
The storekeeper is responsible for the maintenance of
stores and as such he should have a store record under
The storekeeper is held responsible for difference
between physical stock and the stock record.
The store ledger is not up to date as it is prepared
periodically and as such maintenance of bin card is
desired to have up to date balance of stock.
Bin card and store ledger act as a cross check on each
other because balance of stock disclosed by bin card
should agree with balance shown by store ledger.
Material requisition is a document authorising the
storekeeper to issue materials stated therein to the
consuming department. Bill of material is a document
which gives a list of all material require d with the
specifications and quantities for a particular job, order
Material requisition gives a list of material required
by a particular department at a particular time but bill
of material serves the purpose of material requisition
because it shows list of all materials required for a
particular job, order or process.
A bill of material can be very helpful in case of non
standardised jobs whereas material requisition will
not serve this purpose.
A bill of material is helpful in sending competitive
quotations because a bill of material is prepared
keeping in view scientific estimate of all materials
required for particular job , order or process. This is
not possible in case of material requisition which
prepared only at the time of getting materials issued
METHODS OF VALUING MATERIAL
ISSUES OR MATERIAL COSTING
FIRST IN FIRST OUT
LAST INFIRST OUT
HIGHEST IN FIRST OUT
Under this method material is first issued from the
earliest consignment on hand and priced at the cost at
which it was placed in the stores. It means material
received first are issued first.
This method is most suitable at the time of falling prices
because the issue prices of materials to job or work
orders will be high while the cost of replacement of
materials will be low.
It is simple to understand and easy to operate.
It is logical method because it takes into
consideration the normal procedure of utilising first
those materials which are received first.
This method is useful when prices are falling.
This method is also useful when transactions are
not too many and prices of material are fairly steady.
this method increases the possibility of clerical
In case of fluctuations in prices of
materials, comparison between one job and other job
For pricing one requisition more than one price has
often to be taken.
When prices rise, the issue price does not reflect
the market price as materials are issued from the
In this method, issues are priced in the reverse order of
purchase i.e. The price of latest available consignment is
taken. This method is sometimes known as
REPLACEMENT COST method because materials are
issued at the current cost to jobs or work order.
The method is suitable at the time of rising prices
because material will be issued from the latest
consignment at a price which is closely related to
current prices level.
This simple to operate and is useful when
transactions are not too many and the prices are fairly
This method of pricing issues is suitable because
materials are issued at the current market price which
This method helps in showing lower profit because of
increased charge to production during periods of rising
and lower profit reduces burden of income tax.
Production is charged at recent prices because
materials are issued from the latest consignment.
This method may lead to clerical errors.
Comparison between one job and other job becomes
For pricing a single requisitions, more than one price
have to be adopted.
The stock in hand is valued at price which does not
reflect current market price. Consequently, closing
stock will be understated or overstated in the balance
It is a price which is calculated by dividing the total of
the prices of the materials in the stock from which the
material to be priced could be drawn by the number of
prices used in the totals.
This method may lead to over-recovery or underrecovery of cost of materials from production because
quantity purchased in lot is ignored.
In periods of heavy fluctuations it gives better results
because it tends to smooth out fluctuations in prices by
taking average prices of various lots.
FOR EXAMPLE :
These are three different lots of material in stock when
the material is to be issued.
1000 units purchased @ Rs.10
2000 units purchased @ Rs.11
3000 units purchased @ Rs.12
simple average price =
total of prices of materials/no. Of prices
10+11+12 = Rs. 11
It is a price which is calculated by dividing the total cost
of materials in the stock from which the material to be
priced could be drawn by the total quantity of materials
in that stock.
The weighted average price takes into account the price
and quantity of the materials in the store .
It is better to issue the materials at this method because
it recovers the cost price of the materials from
FOR EXAMPLE :
1000 units purchased @ Rs.10
2000 units purchased @ Rs.11
3000 units purchased @ Rs.12
Weighted average price =
total cost of materials/total quantity of materials
1000*10 + 2000*11 + 3000*12 = Rs. 11.38
1000 + 2000 + 3000
There are some materials which are subjective to natural
wastage. Example- material lost due to loading and
unloading, timber lost due to seasoning etc. In such
cases materials are issued at inflated price so as to
recover the cost of natural wastage of material from the
production. In this way, total cost of material is
recovered from the production.
FOR EXAMPLE :
If 100 tonnes of coal are purchased at Rs.75 per tonne
and if it is expected that 5 tonnes of coal will be lost due
to loading and unloading.
Inflated issue price =
total cost of material/ net quantity expected
100*75 = Rs.78.95 per tonne
so in order to recover cost price Rs.7500
(100*75), material will be issued at inflated price which is
Under this method, materials issued to production are
priced at their purchase prices. Basic assumption under
this method is that materials in the stores are capable of
being identified as belonging to specific lots.
Identification can be made by placing some
distinguishing mark usually price tag on every lot. This
method is simple in its mechanism and operation. It is
useful where job costing is in operation and the actual
material is issued cam be identified. This method is
suited to the needs of a small business enterprise when a
small no. Of items of materials are purchased and stored
and are easily identified.
Each concern always maintain a minimum quantity of
material in stock. This minimum quantity is known safety
or base stock and this should be only used when an
emergency arises. The base stock is created out of the first
lot of material purchased and therefore it is always valued
at the cost price of the first lot and is carried forward as a
Any quantity over and above the base stock is issued with
accordance with the other method. The objective of this
method is to issue the material according to the current
prices. This objective is only achieved when LIFO method
is used with the Base stock method.
This method is based on the assumption that the
closing stock of material always remain at the
minimum value, so the issues are priced at the highest
value of the available consignments in the store. This
method is mainly used in case of cost plus contracts or
monopoly products as it is helpful in increasing the
price of the contract or products.
Market price can be either replacement price or
realisable price. The replacement price is used in case of
the items which are held in the stock for use in the
production while realisable price is used in respect of
the items which are kept in stores for sale. Under this
method, materials are issued at the price at which they
can be replaced. Therefore cost of materials issued is not
considered but materials are issued at market price
prevailing on the date of issue. This method matches
current revenue against current cost, therefore useful in
measuring the operating results of a firm correctly.
This method discloses market price whether the
buying is efficient or not. There will be efficiency in
buying if the market price is higher than the cost price.
This method does not recover the cost price of the
materials from production because materials are issued
at the market price which may be more or less than cost
Standard price is the predetermined price and both the
receipts and issues will be valued at this price.
Therefore, this price is neither cost price nor market
Standard price can be of two types :
(a) basic standard price : it is the ideal standard price
fixed for long periods so as to help forwarding plans.
(b) Current standard price : it is the basic standard price
which has been adjusted to provide for permanent
changes on cost of account prevailing trends in the
ECONOMIC ORDER QUANTITY
JUST-IN-TIME INVENTORY SYSTEM
PERPETUAL INVENTORY SYSTEM
DOUBLE BIN SYSTEM
MATERIAL TURNOVER RATIO
MATERIAL COST REPORTS
In order to have proper control on materials, following
levels are set :
REORDER LEVEL : it is the point at which if stock of
a particular material in store approaches, the
storekeeper should initiate the purchase requisition for
fresh supplies of that material. it is fixed in such a way
that difference in quantity of the material between re
ordering level and the minimum level will be sufficient
to meet the requirements of production up to the time
of fresh supply of material is received.
ORDERING LEVEL =
minimum level + consumption during the time required to
get the fresh delivery
RE-ORDERING LEVEL =
maximum consumption + maximum re-order period
MINIMUM(SAFETY) STOCK LEVEL : this represents the
minimum quantity of the material which must be maintained
in hand all the times. It is fixed so that production may not up
due to shortage of the material.
MINIMUM STOCK LEVEL =
Re-ordering level – (normal consumption * normal reorder
MAXIMUM STOCK LEVEL : it represents the
maximum quantity of an item of a material which can
be held in stock at any time. Stock should not exceed
this quantity. This level is fixed so that there be no
MAXIMUM STOCK LEVEL =
re-ordering level + reordering quantity - ( minimum
consumption * minimum re-order period )
DANGER LEVEL : this means a level at which a
normal issue of the material are stopped and issues are
made only under specific instructions. The purchase
officer will make special arrangements to get the
materials which reach at their danger levels so that
production may not stop due to shortage of material.
DANGER LEVEL =
Average consumption * maximum re-order period for
AVERAGE STOCK LEVEL =
minimum stock level + maximum stock level
Minimum stock level + ½ of re-order quantity
It is the cost at which materials are purchased from
supplier. In case of discounts, received from suppliers
total acquisition cost will be calculated after deducting
For example :- if total annual requirement of material
is 10000 units at Rs. 10 per unit. So total acquisition
cost will be Rs. 100000 ( 10000units * 10 per unit )
It is the cost of placing orders for the purchase of
materials and include :
cost of staff posted in purchasing department
, inspection section and payment department.
Cost of stationary, postage and telephone charges.
In other words if it includes all the above costs, ordering
cost varies with number of orders.
It is the cost of holding the materials in the store and includeCost of storage space which could have been utilised for
some other purpose.
Cost of maintaining the materials to avoid deterioration
Amount of interest payable on the money locked up in the
Cost of spoilage in stores and handling
Transportation costs in relation to stock.
So economic order quantity is that quantity which
should be purchased at a particular time so that it
should be economical and minimize cost which is
known as economic purchasing policy.
EOQ = √ 2CO/I
C = annual consumption of materials
O = ordering cost per order
I = inventory carrying cost per year, if it is given in %,
then carrying cost = (% * cost price per unit)/100
There are dynamic conditions of the supply
which enable a firm to place as many orders
as it needs.
Prices of the items remain stable which
keep carrying cost constant.
The quantity of the item to be consumed
during a particular period is totally known
i.e. Quantity to be consumed is certain.
EOQ and reorder quantity are different terms. Reorder
quantity is the quantity for which the purchase order
is actually given. It may be more or less than economic
order quantity, if the firm is not placing orders
according to economic order quantity. In absence of
information reorder quantity and EOQ can be use
JUST IN TIME purchasing is the purchase of material
or goods in such a way that delivery of purchased
items is assured before their use or demand.
Just in time purchasing recognises too much carrying
cost associated with holding high inventory levels.
Therefore, it advocates good relations with suppliers
and making timely purchases from proven suppliers
who can make ready delivery of goods available as and
when required. It advocates a different quantity for
each order if demand fluctuates.
Investment in inventory is reduced because more
frequent purchase orders of small quantities are made.
Carrying cost is reduced as a result of low investment of
A reduction in number of supplier to be dealt with is
possible. Only proven suppliers who can give quick delivery
of quality goods are given purchase order.
JIT assures quick and frequent delivery of small size
orders which result in low inventories causing minimum
It helps in reducing waste of time of the work force
An organisation found it useful to divide materials into
three categories for the purpose of exercising selective
control on materials. An analysis of material cost will
show that a smaller percentage of items of material in
the store may contribute to the large percentage of
value of consumption and vice versa. It exercises
discriminating control over different items of stores
classified on the basis of investment involved. Usually
they are divided into three categories according to their
value and frequency of replenishment. It is also known
as VALUE METHOD or ALWAYS BETTER CONTROL
METHOD or PROPORTIONAL OARTS VALUE
“ A ’’ category of items consists of small percentage i.e.
about 10% of total items handles by the stores but
requires heavy investment about 70% of inventory
value because of their high price or heavy requirement
“ B ’’ category of items are relatively less important20% of the total items of material handled by the store
and % of investment required is about 20% of total
investment in inventories.
“ C ’’ category include- 70% of total items handled and
10% of value
A items having
B items having
C items having
Once in 3 months Once in 6 months
or once in a year
Must be taken
care of by senior supervised by
Review after a
month or every
15 days of waste,
every 3 months
SAFETY STOCK Very low safety
to reduce lead
Moderate value Minimum value
Follow up only
VED – vital, essential and desirable analysis is used to
control for spare parts. The spares of which even for a
short time will stop production for quite sometime
and cost of stock is very high is known as VITAL
spares. The spares, absence of which cannot be
tolerated for more than few hours or a day and cost of
production is very high are ESSENTIAL spares. The
spares which are needed but their absence for a week
or so will not lead to stoppage of production are
DESIRABLE spares. VED analysis is made to get the
It is a system of records maintained by the controlling
department which reflects the physical movement of
stocks and their current balance. Bin cards and store
ledger helps the management in maintaining this
system as they make record of physical movements of
stocks. It is a system of ascertaining balance after
every receipt and issue of materials through stock
records to facilitate regular checking. To ensure the
accuracy of perpetual inventory records, physical
verification of stores is made by the programme of
In this system materials are stored in bins which are
divided into two compartments. Materials are issued
for production from one compartment and materials
in the second compartment are not touched in regular
course. When the materials in the first compartment
are fully consumed, an order is placed. The second
compartment of materials take care of consumption
requirement during the time required to get fresh
delivery. This system has practical usage and simple to
understand and is mainly used in small organisations
who cannot afford expensive techniques.
This ratio is used to judge the efficiency in the usage of
material. This ratio indicates the relation between the
units of material put in for production and the units of
Input output rati0=(units of input/units of output)*100
The input-output ratio is compared with standard
input-output ratio. If actual ratio is higher than
standard ratio, then there is inefficiency in the
manufacturing process and vice-versa.
Material (inventory) turnover ratio is calculated as
Cost of material consumed during the period
Cost of average stock held during the period
If inventory is in days then it is calculated as :
days during the period
inventory turnover ratio
Average stock is the average of closing as well as
opening stock. A low turnover ratio is an indicator of
slow moving stock, accumulation of obsolete stock and
carrying of too much stock.
On the other hand, high inventory turnover ratio is an
indication of fast moving stock and less investment in
If the stock turnover ratio for a particular item is
zero, it means that the item had not been used during
the period and should be immediately disposed off.
This analysis divides the stores into four categories in the
descending order of their importance of their usage rate.
“F” stands for FAST moving items that are consumed in
short span of time. They should be taken care continuously
and replenishment orders should be placed in time to
avoid stock out. “N” stands for NORMAL moving items
which are exhausted over a period. They should be
reviewed at regular span and order should be given at
regular intervals. “S” indicates SLOW moving items which
are not issued at frequent intervals. They should be
reviewed carefully to avoid over stocking. “D” means DEAD
items which are obsolete ones and their consumption is
almost nil. Alternative uses should be found for them or
must be disposed off as early as possible.
The objective is to help the management in exercising
effective material control and taking appropriate
decisions. Material cost report serve as means of
communication usually in the written form of facts
relating to material which should be bought to
attention of various levels of management who can use
them to take suitable action for the purpose of material
control. A proper design of material cost report is
required to achieve these purposes of material control
which is according to individual requirement.